Miss­ing en­voy: asy­lum re­port

Saturday Star - - WORLD - Reuters

A NORTH Korean di­plo­mat who was un­til re­cently act­ing am­bas­sador to Italy has gone miss­ing, a South Korean mem­ber of par­lia­ment said on Thurs­day af­ter a South Korean news­pa­per re­ported he was seek­ing asy­lum in the West.

The di­plo­mat, 48-year-old Jo Song Gil, dis­ap­peared with his wife af­ter leav­ing the em­bassy without no­tice in Novem­ber, ac­cord­ing to Kim Min-ki, a South Korean law­maker who was briefed by the Na­tional In­tel­li­gence Ser­vice.

A diplo­matic source said the Ital­ian min­istry had no record of Jo seek­ing asy­lum in Italy. | BANGKOK: Rain, wind and surg­ing sea­wa­ter buf­feted coastal vil­lages and world-fa­mous tourist re­sorts yes­ter­day, as trop­i­cal storm Pabuk made land­fall on south­ern Thai­land’s east coast.

The storm, with max­i­mum sus­tained winds of 70km/h, hit the shore of Nakhon Si Thammarat prov­ince and was roar­ing west­ward, said the Thai Me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal Depart­ment.

Thai­land can­celled flights to pop­u­lar tourist is­lands, bat­tened down beach­side re­sorts and evac­u­ated off­shore oil rigs as the first trop­i­cal storm in nearly 30 years ar­rived.

Bangkok Air­ways can­celled all flights to and from pop­u­lar hol­i­day desti­na­tion Koh Sa­mui, potentially strand­ing tourists. Ferry ser­vices to and from the is­land were sus­pended.

Other pop­u­lar is­land des­ti­na­tions such as Sa­mui, Phuket and Krabi were also af­fected.

Sev­eral ho­tel op­er­a­tors said they were pre­pared. “We have pre­pared sand bunkers and we have bar­ri­caded glass win­dows,” said a spokesper­son for the Lub d Koh Sa­mui re­sort.

Pe­tro­leum com­pany PTT Ex­plo­ration and Pro­duc­tion said it had sus­pended op­er­a­tions at Bongkot and Erawan, two of the coun­try’s big­gest gas fields in the Gulf of Thai­land. |

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